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Local graduate new bus director

Lead Summary
Mavis Fodness

Brad Goembel is no stranger to city and rural residents in the Luverne School District.
For 20 years Goembel was a driver at Ketterling Services Inc., Luverne, and through the years he grew familiar with local streets and addresses.
On May 1 he put this route experience to use in his new position as Luverne School District’s transportation director. Now he is connecting faces to the residents he only knew by name and address.
“This is only my second job since high school,” said Goembel, a 1996 LHS grad.
Monday will mark the first day of school for Luverne students and the first test of Goembel’s organization of the district’s 12 bus routes.
Goembel said he was intrigued each time he picked up refuse from the bus garage on West Dodge Street. He often talked with now-retired transportation director Lon Remme about bus maintenance and Remme’s stepping down from the position he filled for 36 years.
“I was at the point of either choosing a different job or continue to work at (Ketterlings),” until retirement, Goembel said.
His wife, Tricia, three sons, Brody, 7, Rylin, 5, and Liam, 16 months, plus another child arriving in October prompted him to apply for Remme’s position, where he could more easily attend school activities. As transportation director, Goembel said he could now choose to drive the bus  for his boys’ teams to future away games.
Since beginning in the position three months ago, Goembel said he was overwhelmed by the transportation needs of the district. The last month of the school year ended with more than a dozen buses needed for field trips conducted the same day.
“It was very hectic,” he recalled.
The summer months allowed Goembel to familiarize himself with each of the bus routes he rode before school ended, and now he can easily add new families into the routes.
He has also serviced each of the district’s vehicles in preparation for next week.
Assisting Goembel has been the district’s newest bus driver, Remme, who continues to assist Goembel as he settles into the position. Remme has not been the only one easing Goembel into the job.
“I have a great set of drivers,” he said.
The drivers have been contacting families on their routes, affirming pickup and drop-off times plus locations for the new school year.
Goembel said a future challenge will be helping to determine if road conditions warrant postponement or cancellation of classes.
“I hope we have a good winter,” he said.

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